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Food coma despite strict paleo.

Answered on September 01, 2013
Created July 21, 2013 at 12:35 AM

I have been eating strictly paleo for the past month, have lost weight and generally have more energy - however, every so often, a certain meal or snack will cause me to fall into a food "coma". I have to sleep for at least an hour, sometimes two. Afterwards I feel as foggy as I used to when I ate carbs. Recent meals/snacks that caused this were: smoothie made with coconut milk, nut butter, water, grassfed gelatin powder, kale and a small greenish banana. Another meal that caused this was sauteed zucchini with no sugar tomato sauce and meatballs with a few strawberries afterwards. I have had both these meals on different days with no problems, yet a different time they cause this "coma".

72cf727474b8bf815fdc505e58cadfea

on July 21, 2013
at 01:35 PM

This response sounds like considerably more than "relaxation." Also, it sounds like she's eating very low-carb, which shouldn't be provoking that high an insulin response.

72cf727474b8bf815fdc505e58cadfea

on July 21, 2013
at 02:18 AM

The problem with phytic acid is mineral absorption, which should develop gradually over time. I've never heard of it causing "food coma" symptoms.

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3 Answers

0
C8a7a7a695d35cda6f04511df624e897

on September 01, 2013
at 09:08 AM

Also check possible allergies to tomatoes and nuts. If you suffer from an Autoimmune condition the following can be an issue and cause digestive problems:

Eggs Gluten Nuts Dairy Nightshade vegetables (Potatoes, tomatoes, sweet and hot peppers, eggplant, tomatillos, tamarios, pepinos, pimentos, paprika, and cayenne peppers)

0
E05d8887dcae8c7bf889b426931c2b5d

(-14)

on July 21, 2013
at 05:27 AM

Hi Lisa,

The quick short answers to your your 'food coma' episodes are:

  1. Because you're stressed
  2. Because you didn't get enough sleep
  3. Because you are enough

There's actual nothing wrong with feeing a little tired after eating. You should definitely feel a bit more relaxed.

What happens is when you eat a good meal, insulin rises. When that happens, cortisol and the entire sympathetic nervous system turns off. That leaves us feeling relaxed and warm and fuzzy as they say.

The higher your stress levels are before you eat, the more the sympathetic nervous system shuts down which means the more tired and relaxed you get.

The longer you go between meals , the more sleep deprived you, the more stress you have, the greater the 'food coma' is after you eat.

So Lisa, there's nothing wrong at all feeling relaxed after you eat. Is normal and a part of our stressful lives. It's actually a bit therapeutic too like a massage.

Hope that helps :)

72cf727474b8bf815fdc505e58cadfea

on July 21, 2013
at 01:35 PM

This response sounds like considerably more than "relaxation." Also, it sounds like she's eating very low-carb, which shouldn't be provoking that high an insulin response.

0
F4ae81f342d8f66d784bf5e5c04dc00a

on July 21, 2013
at 01:06 AM

Personally, I find nuts extremely hard to digest (and just not worth it) - even if they're raw, soaked, and then dried/lightly roasted to eliminate most of the phytic acid. Nut butter would definitely cause me to turn into a slug. Chris Kresser discusses the trouble with eating nuts here

Eating raw fruit with your meals can sometimes cause digestive upset, since fruit has a tendency to ferment in the gut if not eaten solo.

Coconut milk is extremely rich and fatty, which can be difficult to assimilate for individuals with impaired digestion. Kresser also mentions that coconut milk is a FODMAP, and to avoid it if you can't absorb fructose well.

Good luck!

72cf727474b8bf815fdc505e58cadfea

on July 21, 2013
at 02:18 AM

The problem with phytic acid is mineral absorption, which should develop gradually over time. I've never heard of it causing "food coma" symptoms.

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